Now that we are getting potatoes from the garden my thoughts naturally turn to storing and processing the bounty of produce to come. So of course I will make jams and chutneys and bottled fruits and tomatoes and store dried beans. I will freeze peas and green beans and fruits. I will dry walnuts and hazelnuts and chestnuts and make things with them that I have drooled over on the internet. There will be cider and homemade beer and wine.
All this marvellous food and drink for free!
No it bloody well isn’t.
For I shall have to buy big pans for making jams and chutneys even if I do without thermometers and funnels and tongs for lifting jars out of water and cherry stoners and apple corers and sieves, I shall have to buy jars. I shall have to buy storage tins for storing dried food. I shall have to buy a freezer to freeze food. I shall have to buy baking accoutrements like tins and rolling pins and pastry brushes and weighing scales. Brewing supplies like buckets and demi-johns and bottles and caps.
All this is before I start buying food to add to the food, things like sugar and vinegar, spices, flour, baking powder, yeast.
Admittedly much of the stuff is “an investment” and will be used many times. But it could all go horribly wrong and I will have all the possessions but no food. I could buy a lot of jars of jam, frozen peas, tins of tomatoes and sticky buns for that money all made by experts in their field, and have change for a recliner, parasol and a good book.
So at the end of the day I can’t produce food cheaper than I can buy it. All things considered. Unless I consider food miles, freshness, quality of life, job satisfaction and all the worthy green stuff, but I just wanted to moan about all the stuff that has to be bought so I won’t go into all that. I'd only be leaning on an open door or boring or both.